The rules being what they are allow for bad business practices. Whats stopping anyone from saying "I have 10 days to do this and another 45 days to do this before anyone can do that?" Let's be frank; as I seller I'm not going to ignore messages or emails for 10 days if I'm serious about making the sale. If you do, you stand to loose the buyer. Equally true as a buyer. If you wait 10 days before you initiate the purchase, you'll loose out. So why handle the situation as such AFTER money and produce have exchanged hands?
Yes, things happen buts its more common, from what I've learned, for a person to ignore a message after the fact than it is for "something to come up". The rules allow you to calculate your time before action is taken. You can ignore everyone to include the moderators and the other party can't use the PP protection without running the risk of being banned.
Rep game or not, there's something wrong with this from a good faith and business perspective. The rules should be reviewed. Further, it should be well known what the resolution steps the moderators take to resolve the problem. If they're lax, they should be tightened. For example, if the buyer/seller can't go to PP and file a dispute, shorten the time allowed before the mods go to PP and file a dispute...something along those lines. Tighter guidelines protect everyone. The mods can use good judgement but taking away the excess wiggle-room will keep situations like this from happening all together.